Wednesday, April 18, 2012

P is for Passionate About Paper

I love paper. Take me to a stationery store, and I'll wander the aisles all day checking out the journals and notepads and trying out all the pens. (Did I mention I also love pens?)

Photo by Elisa Xyz
Courtesy of Public Domain Pictures
My obsession with paper comes from my mom--or at least I like to blame it on her! Whenever she and Dad took me to the orthodontist for my checkups, she'd insist on stopping at the stationery store afterward to find out what was new in office supplies. Mind you, she didn't need office supplies; she just wanted them.

As I wandered around the store with her, I began my own love affair with stenographer's notebooks, handmade paper, moleskin journals, day planners, diaries--anything and everything paper. I was charmed by the rainbow of colors and diversity of textures, and I had a special weakness for stickers and novelty items featuring some of the popular trends of the day (think mid-80s). My many trips to the store also started my brief obsession with erasers and four-color pens. (Okay, I admit I still love those pens!) In my mind, the stationery store was the perfect place, not only for me but for my friends as well. I bought many a birthday gift at that store--although I'm not sure all of my friends found the gifts as amazing as I did!

Photo by Shari Weinsheimer
Courtesy of Public Domain Pictures
My passion for all things paper still rages today. Since I started taking my writing more seriously several years ago, I've gone through notebook after notebook. One of my favorite things to do now is to troll the back-to-school sales and buy stacks of college-ruled notebooks for ten or fifteen cents apiece. I find these notebooks are the best to use for my writing, as I'm not afraid I'll deface them with my scrawl. I buy notebooks in smaller sizes, too, so I can tuck them into my purse or hide them away in the stroller for ideas that come to me when I'm out with the kids.

Photo by Joy Shrader
Courtesy of Public Domain Pictures
Although I buy far more plain notebooks, I do love the fancier stationery and journals. In fact, I love them so much that when I buy them, I just look at them; I'm reluctant to destroy them by writing in them. A couple of years ago, I bought two beautiful journals filled with acid-free paper. I intended to begin mother's journals for each of my kids, where I'd write down the funny, cute, and interesting things they've done and said. Well, to this day, those journals are blank. I tell myself I haven't used them yet because I can't find a good archival pen, but really, it's the same old story: I'm afraid I'll mess them up. Meanwhile, I have drawers and boxes and purses full of little slips of paper on which I've written all sorts of memories. I just hope I can find them all if--I mean when--I do decide to start filling those journals.

And speaking of my kids, I'm happy to say that they are following in my paper-loving footsteps. Among other things, this year the Easter Bunny brought them some tiny notebooks, and both kids--but especially my five-year-old son--have been scribbling like mad. Will there be another writer or two in the family? I hope so!


How about you? Do you have a passion for paper?

48 comments:

  1. I have a passion for pens, so I understand passion for paper :)

    Hope you’re enjoying the challenge so far!
    --Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

    Twitter: @AprilA2Z
    #atozchallenge

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    1. I'm having a lot of fun! Thanks for your comment. :)

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  2. yes i do!! my daughter and i love to look at stationery and cards--the Easter bunny put lots of journals, notepads, and stationery in her basket--lovely post

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  3. Too funny! I know what you mean about the empty journals! I don't write in them because I fear that I will write it down and then later that day I will come up with something so much better that I should have wrote. At least you wrote it down somewhere, unlike me who thought I would keep it in my head and write it down someday. So many memories lost... Oh, and I love pens too!!

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    1. Glad to know I'm not the only one!

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  4. I have a weakness for pretty paper and a nicely-bound journal as well! Other women drool over shoes...Kate's Paperie in Manhattan is where I go to drool.

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    1. I like shoes, but I LOVE paper. I have a friend who just can't understand that at all. :)

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  5. I love love love paper. My problem is that people -know- I love paper, so they buy me journals as gifts. While some of them are beautiful, others are sort of meh. I don't what to do with them because I can't just throw them out. But I don't want to waste words on them either. The others are too pretty--like you said.

    Staples started making these eco-journals a few years ago. They're simple spiral bound notebooks, but I love the color of the lines on the pages, and they have some great covers.

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    1. I agree that beauty is in the eye of the beholder when it comes to journals.

      The eco-journals sound interesting. Luckily, I live right next to a Staples. I'll check them out. Thanks!

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  6. I felt giddy just reading this post! I feel exactly the same way you and your mother feel about the paper supply store. It's fun to find others with our same obsessions.

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    1. I'm telling you: we're kindred spirits! :)

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  7. Ha - I'm exactly the same! Looooove paper and stationary.

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    1. Yay! Another member of the club. ;)

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  8. I get so excited about stationery! It even thrills me to have a brand new packet of envelopes! I have so many notebooks all around the place I have to bring them all together now and then and write their contents into a MASTER NOTEBOOK to keep all my ideas together! LindaK

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    1. You have a master notebook? That's awesome! I need one!

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  9. I'm addicted to notebooks - I buy them for all my friends for their presents and am always dumbfounded that I never ever get one! Not that I need any with the boxes and shelves of spare I have. I'm like you - I don't like to ruin them by using them!
    Lx

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    1. My friends don't give them to me, either, which I can't understand. Like you, I don't need more of them, but I sure want them. :)

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  10. Paper, pens, inks, journals, notebooks, stationery, nibs, nib holders, quills, blotters, making handmade paper...yup! I have an obsession. Just one of my obsessions, but the one I've had the longest--since I was nine. Have the same problem with really pretty notebooks or journals...they are too good to use. I am finally getting over it a bit...after I hit 60. LOL! ;)

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    1. When my husband comments on all my paper clutter, I just tell him I could be obsessed with something worse. He leaves me alone after that!

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  11. So funny....I happened upon an old notebook today that had a tablet in it. I wrote on the paper, started to tear it out and the paper was so heavy I figured that I had 2 sheets! Nope! It was just a quality piece of paper!
    I, too, like to buy journals (usually at Dollar Tree) to jot down quilting ideas and such. I've got a *couple* of them. Can I ever find the one I need? Guess that is the next thing I need to organize.

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    1. I have the same problem. Maybe we both need to create a master notebook, like LindaK mentioned above. :)

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  12. I can understand your obsession because stationery stores are full of colorful goodies. I'm always drawn to beautiful notecards, but do I buy them? No. I guess I don't write to anyone. Now, as a scrapbooker, I could be addicted to buying paper because it's all so pretty. Mostly I end up confused and indecisive.

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    1. I want to be scrapbooker simply because I love all the supplies! I often look at them in the store and think that it might be time for me to pick up a new hobby. :)

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  13. I am a paper nut. Since I'm a writer, scrapbooker, and a teacher there was no escaping the obsession. I have quite a hoard in my cabinet. Whenever I walk into a stationery store I get a rush. Thanks for visiting my blog fellow A to Z-er. :)

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  14. I am a sucker for notecards and cool pens. Even though we are in the era of electronic communication, I still like to send a hand written note out of the blue sometimes. It's fun to have cool cards on which to write the note so I browse stationary stores all the time.

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    1. I don't send handwritten notes as often as I could, which is sad, I think. I think it's great that you do!

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  15. i love office depot. i have a hard time resisting the urge to buy unnecessary paper and writing utensil items...

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  16. I love office supplies! I'm currently obsessed with the Zig Writer markers and I spent most of my lunch hour today drooling over all of the colors available. And I have enough notecards to send thank you notes for years and years to come! ;)

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    1. I love those markers! The colors are amazing. :)

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  17. Hey, thanks for stopping by my blog with the A-Z challenge. :) We have some paper addicts at our home. I love the creativity side of things, but tips on how to deal with the paper shrapnel would be wonderful! :)

    Valerie

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    1. I wish I knew. My house is a bit of a disaster!

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  18. Lovely post... I would be in a stationery for hours... I love notebooks and pencil accessories... Happy blogging!

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  19. I do have a passion for notebooks! Although I've come to prefer the usual exercise book size and soft cover, I like fancy pictures on them and am fussy about the quality of the paper inside and even on the lines - I prefer faint.

    Wagging Tales

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    1. I also like good-quality paper, which makes the pen glide all the more easily and helps me keep up with my thoughts. :)

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  20. I love me a stationary store too...I have papers, pens, stickers, supplies and all kinds of stuff that I can't part with...in my classroom too. And not only did I pass this onto my own kids I get to pass this on to many kids each year. Your son would probably like the books we make. I take boxes from food...cereal boxes, raisin boxes....any kind of box and make it into a book. Fill it with plain paper or lined paper and write and illustrate a story. They love it!

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    1. What a great idea! He would love it; I'll definitely give it a try. Thanks!

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  21. This reminds me of Meg Ryan in You've Got Mail. She has some lines about loving the smell of pencils and tape, claiming it reminds her of Fall.

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    1. I love that movie! This will be my excuse to watch it again. :)

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  22. When I was growing up if Mom took us into a store, K-Mart for instance, if she didn't know where I was, she knew she could always find me in the stationary department! Still to this day, I love it! Love office supply stores, Staples, etc. It smells good in there...I know that sounds crazy.

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    1. That doesn't sound crazy to me. I agree!

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  23. I bet your kids would rather have those journals all filled up in a non archival pen, than empty. ;)

    I love office supplies, too. As a homeschooler, I get so excited when Staples summer sales start up. We stock for the whole year then.

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    1. I bet you're right about that. :)

      The only thing better than the stationery store is the stationery store during a sale!

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  24. I have to laugh - I do so many of the same things especially the 10cent college note books. I use the excuse that its for the kids and their homeschooling. Truth be told my oldest goes through more paper than I thought possible.

    I enjoyed your post - happy A-zing.
    Blessings, Margot

    http://devotionals-margot.blogspot.com/

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    1. It's nice to know I'm not alone! Thanks for commenting. :)

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